Abu Dhabi, UAE, 19 June 2014 – During the Holy month of Ramadan, the Abu Dhabi community will have an exciting opportunity to learn more about the stars, constellations and planets. The campaign “Journey to Space” will feature a mobile planetarium located at The Galleria, Al Maryah Island which will bring a unique experience to Abu Dhabi with interactive activities, lessons and workshops to educate the community about the stars and the universe.
Yahsat, the region’s leading satellite service operator, and Mubadala Development Company, are working with local astronomy enthusiast Nezar Sallam to set up this mobile planetarium, offering children and families an unprecedented edutainment platform. The planetarium will be operational from Wednesday to Saturday for the duration of Ramadan, giving families an opportunity to learn about space in an interactive and engaging environment. Educational workshops will be hosted by Nezar Sallam every Thursday and Friday at 9:30pm and 10:30pm, covering four themes: the moon, saturn, mars and satellites in space.
“Education doesn’t have to be boring or tedious, it’s meant to excite, enlighten and enrich the minds of youths. With that in mind, we wanted to empower young people to learn more about one of the fastest and most interesting careers that they can pursue. We believe that UAE youth have a lot to offer the future of our industry, and individuals like local astronomer Nezar Salam have an infectious passion for space exploration that we want to share with the next generation of space explorers,” said Mona Al Muhairi, Executive Director Human Capital at Yahsat.
Nadine Hassan, Head of Social Development and Partnerships at Mubadala, added: “Summer time is a great opportunity for children to engage in extra-curricular activities that can harness their skills in a number of different areas. Our collaboration with Yahsat on this unique initiative builds upon our existing efforts to inspire young Emiratis to consider exciting career paths in Science, Technology and Innovation related industries.”
Alongside many activities and exhibitors, Abu Dhabi Technology Development Committee (TDC), will showcase an exhibit named “Icy Bodies” to help explain comets and their behavior in space. This show offers a sneak peek into the exhibits that will be featured at the Abu Dhabi Science Center (ADSC), a permanent state-of-the-art facility, set to open in the second half of 2016.
On the first and last weekends of Ramadan, Nezar will showcase his self-built observatory which houses the UAE’s largest telescope. The mobile planetarium will be open from 8pm to midnight from Wednesday to Saturday for the duration of the Holy Month of Ramadan. More information on the event and its activities can be found on Weyana, Mubadala’s youth platform, at www.weyana.ae/journeytospace.